Which Current Black and White Films have Incorporated Development Accelerants?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by Andre Noble, Jul 30, 2012.

  1. Andre Noble

    Andre Noble Member

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    Two questions:

    1) Which Current Black and White Films have Incorporated Development Accelerants?


    2) Which Current Black and White Films do not not have Incorporated Development Accelerants?


    Replies from those who are knowledgeable most needed.:smile: Thanks
     
  2. timparkin

    timparkin Member

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    I'm interested in this... presumably to work out whether pre-wetting affects dev times?
     
  3. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    I've never heard of a developer-incorporated film in over 50 years of developing film.

    Many papers include a developing agent. Those commonly have "Rapid" in the product name.

    - Leigh
     
  4. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

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    There's no need for development agents or accelerators in films. Papers sometimes incorporate them to allow sped-up activation processing. With film, that's not particularly useful.
     
  5. Ronald Moravec

    Ronald Moravec Member

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    Paper only, never film.

    Do not presoak. Ilford and probably other films have agents to ensure even absorption of developer which a presoak will remove.

    The idea is to immerse the film fully as fast as possible. Plastic tanks do this by design. Stainless if you drop the loaded reel into a tank already filled with developer. For single reel and maybe double you may get away without, but sooner or later you will mark it. Larger tanks always have lift rods for this reason.

    The only time to presoak is if you will hand interleave sheet film to prevent sticking.

    No manufacturer suggests a presoak in their instructions. They know better than people on internet forums.
     
  6. zsas

    zsas Member

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    Maybe amend to say almost all manufacturers. For eg Efke reccomends a presoak with some film:

    "....it is recommended to presoak..."

    Per:
    http://www.freestylephoto.biz/pdf/MACO_IR820c_AURA.pdf
     
  7. Andre Noble

    Andre Noble Member

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  8. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    If I understand this correctly ........

    "Incorporated Development Accelerants" are not the same as "Incorporated Developers".

    To my knowledge, no current films (or even films of the recent past) have Developers incorporated in them. In addition, no current papers have developers incorporated in them, although there are "developer-like" components incorporated in some emulsions, in very low quantities, to help adjust contrast.

    As emulsions are essentially ever-changing, almost liquid "soups", I expect the reference to "Development Accelerants" is a reference to emulsion components intended to maintain speed and contrast as the film ages. I would guess that all current/modern films would have such incorporated.
     
  9. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    I have always presoaked every single type of film I have ever used, and have yet to hear any logical
    argument why I shouldn't. Since I mostly tray dev sheet film, the alternative would seem to
    be courting disaster - the sheets would either stick together, or they'd have to be fed into the tray
    so slowly that the sheets would suffer disparate dev times. You want them easily rotated before they hit the actual developer, and with any surface tension or clinging bubble issues.
     
  10. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    The instructions for Diafine say definitely NOT to presoak. Doing so will ruin the operation of the developer.

    Diafine works by having Solution A soaked up by the dry emulsion. If the emulsion is already wet, that can't happen.

    I use Diafine for all my tray development, and it works flawlessly.

    - Leigh
     
  11. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Thanks Leigh. I have never used Diafine and probably never will, so guess that doesn't apply to my
    own experience or to typical developers.
     
  12. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    Hi Drew,

    I believe the restriction applies to all two-part developers that rely on absorption of the first component into the emulsion.

    You might consider Diafine for tray development. It's amazing because it's insensitive to variations in both time and temperature.
    And it produces beautiful negatives. Probably better with slower films than fast ones (which I never use).

    - Leigh
     
  13. premortho

    premortho Member

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    Leigh, I've never used Diaphine as they claim speed increases...this makes me nervous as I equate speed increasers as either more grain or inadequite shadow detail. But maybe I'm not such an old dog that I can't learn a new trick. I have used the Standard MH plate developer since 1948...and my grandfather used it since 1896! For 5X7"s, I mix up enough for 2 oz developer plus 4 oz water, and sloosh it across the film from the top quickly, then level the tray and agitate by tilting the tray for about 6 minutes. would this work with Diaphine?:whistling:
     
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  15. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    I shoot Ilford FP4+ at 100 (box speed is 125) and have experienced no problems with tonality or grain. Superb results.

    Since Diafine has an almost infinite shelf life, and does not deplete with use in the traditional replenishment sense, I use
    about a half gallon of liquid in a large 3 1/2" deep tray for developing 8x10.

    Development uses straight stock solution, not diluted, which is returned to the storage bottle for re-use.
    One caution... DO NOT pre-soak the film, regardless of any contrary instructions from the film manufacturer.

    I normally develop six sheets at a time, emulsion down. It's a compensating developer, so minimal agitation.

    I use four trays, one each for Solution A and Solution B, followed by regular indicator stop bath and rapid fix.
    Wash, PermaWash, second wash, PhotoFlo, and dry as usual.

    The critical thing about using Diafine is avoiding contamination. You should have a complete separate set of tray, graduates,
    containers, and utensils for Solution A, and not use those for anything else. Even slight contamination will ruin it.

    I really love Diafine for tray development because it's insensitive to time and temperature. As long as the temp is
    70°F-85°F (not < 70) it's happy. Time is from 3 to 5 minutes in each solution, with no difference in results.

    These features make it ideal for tray development IMO.

    - Leigh
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 1, 2012
  16. MartinP

    MartinP Member

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    For the OP's questions . . . The comment in that thread he linked concerning Acros is, so far as I have ever read, bizarre.

    The only film I've seen which developed with an accelerant was a graphic-arts lith-film for use in a large pre-print system (Agfa something??) and the material came in a cartridge affair. This was thirty years ago mind you. It looked to be that the developer was in the material then was activated by the liquid bath (perhaps similar to the rapid-access print proofing systems?), but all locked away inside the machine, giving a dry result in a minute or so. For a camera film? Never heard of it.
     
  17. Ronald Moravec

    Ronald Moravec Member

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    I know about EFKE and never did it.
     
  18. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    I presoak everything, color and B&W, and use normal development in my Jobo.

    Modern accelerants are generally polymers or are ballasted, and will not wash out of a film.

    Ilford apparently uses a surfactant in their films which aids in development. I use a prewet anyhow. It works just fine. I am not aware of any accelerants that wash out of any film, but these surfactants can.

    These polymers are compatible with gelatin and can be left in the film.

    Since some of them act by creating greater swell and voids in the gelatin, even if they did wash out, their effect would remain due to the voids caused by their absence. But, since some of them are designed to attach to gelatin itself, they are not prone to washing out.

    IDK how anyone here could "know" that a given product contains an accelerant as manufacturers do not announce these things.

    PE
     
  19. Michael R 1974

    Michael R 1974 Subscriber

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    PE - just out of curiosity what is your reason for presoaking everything? Is it because you do everything in the Jobo? Other than that, or when shuffling multiple sheets in a tray, I don't see what the point is otherwise (ie roll film in inversion tanks single sheets in trays etc). Since you know more about emulsions than anyone on here, it concerns me when you do something I don't!! :smile:
     
  20. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    I use a Jobo, I use hard rubber tanks, and I use regular SS tanks for my films. I tray process plates.

    I presoak everything to prevent unevenness and pinholes due to air bubbles.

    PE
     
  21. seadrive

    seadrive Member

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    On the issue of presoaking, I presoak 120 roll film for a couple of reasons. One is that, when the ambient temperature is very different from my target development temp, it allows me to adjust the temp inside the tank to something closer to what I want.

    When it's 90F in the room, using a presoak of water in the low 60's prevents my developer temperature from immediately shooting up from 68 to somewhere in the 70's.
     
  22. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    I've used presoak sometimes, and sometimes not. The results are, for all practical purposes, the same. That's for SS tanks and roll film, or sheet film on a Uniroller base.
    Today I skip that step, since I find it unnecessary.
    With that said, JoBo processing I believe recommends a 5min prewash, and to me it would make sense if I did tray developing of sheet film. Two bath developers, as mentioned above, makes sense not to prewash.
    Then there's also the notion of water quality, where in certain water conditions, washing away the surfactants Ilford uses (PE mentions those) could be detrimental, while with other water qualities it could be beneficial. Think hard/soft water, pH, mineral content, etc.
    Do whatever works for you, no worries and don't fix what isn't broken. :smile:
     
  23. Michael R 1974

    Michael R 1974 Subscriber

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    Agree. I've never had an unevenness or pinhole problem with either sheets (I don't shuffle-process) or rolls without presoaking. But I was still curious to hear why PE does pre-soak (he knows a thing or two about film.... :D). I don't use a Jobo either so I thought maybe that could have something to do with it.
     
  24. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    There is always the ambient temperature to consider. Presoaking tempers equipment and film to the right process temp.

    PE
     
  25. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    That's a good point! To get around that I use a tray full of 70F water (my processing temp). As soon as I pour my 71F developer into the developing tank, and agitate for 30s, all but the lid of the tank is submerged in that 70F water.

    With the roller base developing I use 72F dev, and I measure it at 68F coming out. On average it's 70F through the processing cycle.

    I believe that as long as we consistently do it the same way every time, a small temperature variance is OK, as long as it's the same.
     
  26. Roger Cole

    Roger Cole Subscriber

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    I always presoak when I use the Jobo, which is for everything except Diafine which I do use, but not for sheet film (yet.) No problems with the pre-soak. I use the five minute just as Jobo recommends.

    I have read people saying that the dire warnings against pre-soaking with Diafine are likely not true and it would still work fine. I don't know. It works fine without the pre-soak so I'm not sure why I'd try that, unless maybe I was doing sheet film in trays. Doing sheet film in trays, manipulating the sheets without scratching in total darkness, always made me nervous to think about so I never even tried it. Before I got the Jobo I did my 4x5 in deep tanks with hangers. This worked fine, but takes a lot of solution and makes temperature control difficult. I have considered trying 4x5 in Diafine using those same tanks and hangers, which I still have.

    To address someone else's point, the speed increase with Diafine depends greatly on the film. Modern films get less than older ones, sometimes none. It's been decades since I've used FP4+ in Diafine (not sure it had the "plus" in those days!) but at the time I seem to get an effective speed that the Diafine box said, but I think that was faster than the current box says. I would say that if you shoot Tri-X (TXT, I've not tried TXP) at box speed and develop in Diafine you probably will not like the results, whatever a densitometer says. The box says 1600 and in daylight that looks good. In tungsten light, which is likely when you need that kind of speed, that's underexposed with modern Tri-X. It looked pretty good in the 80s. Modern Tri-X I shoot at 1000 under tungsten light in Diafine. This is my favorite combination for situations when I need more than 400 but don't need TMZ or Delta 3200 and one of two combos where I use Diafine. The other is with Pan F+. It picks up a bit of speed from box, or at least lets you shoot at box speed when the film might like slower, and the compensating effect of two bath development tames the sometimes high contrast of the film nicely. So, oddly enough, I use Diafine for my 35mm and 120 films when I want either a very fast, but not the fastest, film or when I'm using the slowest one that I ever shoot. Probably 75% of my black and white is Tri-X or FP4+ shot at box speed and developed in D76 1+1 though.

    All of which has absolutely nothing to do with the question in the original post. :wink: